Washington attended Virginia State University in Petersburg, Virginia and played on the football team. After that, he earned a master's degree at Rutgers University and began his teaching career as an assistant professor of agriculture education and farm mechanics in 1949 at Delaware State University. In 1950, Washington became an assistant coach for the Hornets football program and served at this capacity through 1964. He spent 1965 and 1966 as the head coach and compiled a record of 7–10–0. Washington returned for one more season to once again serve as an assistant coach.
In 1971, Washington became chair of the Department of Agriculture and Natural Resources, a position which he held until his retirement at the end of the 1990–91 academic year.